Uncover an ancient canyon wilderness, wealthy in riparian nature and pristine, organic beauty, and delight in a enjoyable and thrilling outside adventure, white water rafting the Upper Salt River. Situated just 135 miles from Phoenix, close to the town of Globe, the roughly 52 mile stretch of the Upper Salt River, right after finding run off from the regional White Mountains in the course of early spring, is residence to some of Arizona’s greatest Class III and Class IV river rapids. Even if you happen to be a newbie, white water rafting does not demand possessing prior expertise or instruction is comparatively affordable and very best of all, it really is a exciting and thrilling adrenaline rush and a great way to encounter nature and the outside with your good friends or household. So if you look at oneself an outside adventurer, and would such as to knowledge anything new and thrilling to do, that is not high priced and near Phoenix, then I very advise you go white water rafting down the Upper Salt River, Globe, Arizona!
I seriously delight in the adventure of white water rafting and have previously been down the Snake River in the Teton’s National Park, Wyoming, as effectively as the Merced River in Yosemite National Park, California. I had heard about white water rafting trips down the Upper Salt River right here in Arizona, nonetheless, I had in no way completed it just before since the season for operating the Upper Salt is highly unpredictable as properly as extremely brief. To time it just suitable The moment the perennial run off and water flow is at its optimum and peak, ideally you happen to be hunting at about early-mid March. On the other hand, this is dependent on how substantially snow is received up in the mountains every single winter. The season for operating the Upper Salt they say truly extends from as early as February till mid May well. So After I saw that there was a regional team named the Desert Mountain Paddlers, led and organized by Ron Russell, who was arranging a white water rafting trip down on the Upper Salt River, I promptly invited my pals and got signed up at a discounted team rate By way of Canyon Rio Rafting, based out of Flagstaff, Arizona, and the specialist outfitter corporation who runs the Upper Salt River.
It was a wonderful spring morning throughout the 1st week in April that my buddies and I met Ron Russell, aka “The Canoe Guy” and the rest of the Desert Mountain Paddlers group and started our day’s journey, heading out US 60 east, aka “The Old West Highway” and arrived in Globe by 7:30am. Following a brief break for food and restrooms at McDonalds, we produced a left onto US 60-Hwy 77 North and enjoyed the stunning mountain drive for yet another 30 minutes till we lastly arrived at the best of the hill overlooking the Salt River Valley beneath and had been all absolutely stunned and amazed at how fully breathtaking and stunning it was. Wow!
We drove down the steep hill, and immediately after crossing over the bridge, produced a speedy left onto the brief dirt road exactly where by eight:30am we had lastly arrived at Canyon Rio’s meeting and parking spot. We got out and had been warmly greeted by the staff of Canyon Rio who rapidly offered us the gear we would be needing for our day’s river rafting adventure which includes full wet suits, nylon splash jackets, helmets, paddles and PFD’s (individual flotation devices). We had been suggested by Canyon Rio in advance, to not only bring with us bottled water but as well, The moment river rafting early in the spring season As soon as water temps are extremely cold and outdoors air temps a bit additional chilly than in summer season months, to put on garments that are produced of either synthetic or speedy drying fabrics, and shoes that are old sneakers or river sandals with socks that are neoprene or wool material to retain your feet and physique from possessing as well cold.
The moment absolutely suited up, and with our paddles in our hands, we started to stroll down to the river’s edge with each other exactly where our river guide, “Scratchy”, a veteran river guide with 9 years practical experience behind him, met us and offered an good introduction to river rafting such as understanding how to use a paddle, as nicely as what to do in situation of an emergency, including falling out of the raft, what to do must the raft get flipped over. Soon after this thorough overview, we had been lastly prepared for what was confident to be a highly adventurous and as well highly scenic 9 mile river rafting journey down the Upper Salt River! Following having with each other for a couple of rapid team photographs, we eagerly got into all of our 6 man rafts and one by one launched out onto the river by about ten am.
The Upper Salt River Canyon, about 4000 feet elevation, was windy and chilly that morning, I’d estimate someplace in the 50’s in temperature as we started our journey and I was content to have been supplied a full wet suit as properly as a wind breaker for added warmth. As we had been slowly drifting down from our river launch web site, I looked up and was just absolutely amazed at the extremely wonderful, pristine scenery of this wilderness spot, which stretched 52 miles from Globe all the way down to Roosevelt Lake. Situated on ancestral Native American Indian grounds, the Upper Salt River Canyon is extremely restricted by the Fort Apache Indian Reservation, and is only accessible by river raft or kayak with a permit.
It only took a handful of minutes on the river ahead of we came to our 1st rapid, the “Bump & Grind” rapid, classified as a “Class II” rapid. And wow, what enjoyable that was as well! But that was just a warm up. There had been a complete lot far more to come, we had been headed for an whole series of fantastic “Class III” rapids, and though we had missed the peak flow a handful of weeks earlier, the river’s cfs, or flow rate, was nonetheless extremely fantastic that day, “Scratchy”, our river guide suggested, so we had been in for a real adventure! How rapids are classified is actually fairly subjective, I learned. Fundamentally it is determined by water levels, flow prices, obstructions or obstacles in the river’s bottom like rocks and boulders or some thing that would result in the water, generally flowing down hill, to spin, swirl or trigger to spill over which includes a water fall. Rapids are rated anyplace from 1, which is your scenic float, all the way up to ten, and highly risky. Nonetheless, if you are a starting to intermediate river rafter, which includes myself, the Class II & Class III river rafting trips are great and the Upper Salt River presents some of the finest rapids in the whole western U.S.
Soon after warming up at the “Bump and Grind”, Class II rapid, and with the rest of our group of Desert Mountain Paddlers now closely behind us, we looked up and had been excited to take on the subsequent rapid, our initial Class III rapid of the day, the “Maytag” rapid! Wow, now that was entertaining! But that was just the starting of the adventure! From there it was all Class III”s, an complete series! With our group behind us and mainly out of sight by now, we continued on to move on to the subsequent rapid and the subsequent, the “Grumman”, the “Mother Rock” and the “Overboard” rapids, rocking, splashing and spinning, crashing against the waves and twirling Via the torrent of present of the Upper Salt, I practically got tossed out of the boat twice!. Wow, what a wild, exciting and thrilling adventure ride!
Soon after effectively operating the “Overboard” Class III rapid, we veered our raft over to the river’s edge to wait for the rest of our group to arrive. This was turning out to be one heck of a wild river run, and I noticed I wasn’t the only one to get tossed out either! There had been a handful of solo kayakers as well attempting to run the river that day and one of them got flipped over and tossed out of his kayak! Fortunately, following swimming By means of the rapid even though nonetheless hanging onto his kayak, he sooner or later he produced it and was okay. We waited along the river’s edge till everybody had produced it effectively By way of the last rapid and After we had all of our rafting group back with each other again, we continued on.
From right here we had a break from the rapids and had a opportunity to appreciate some of the stunning canyon scenery and wildlife that’s along the Upper Salt River. So totally stunning and majestic, I discovered it so wonderful that the Upper Salt River Canyon is a backcountry wilderness location, consisting of about 32,000 acres, that has managed to stay entirely remote, and untouched right here inside the state of Arizona. What a great day and adventure this were so far, I believed to myself.
It was a tiny immediately after 12 noon After we arrived at Canyon Rio’s camp internet site on the river and exactly where we’d pull our rafts over to the shore and have a picnic lunch and mid-day rest break. And what a lunch it was as well! Canyon Rio seriously supplied us a scrumptious and good lunch, that had it all, proper down to the last specifics also. Wow! We had been genuinely enjoying every little thing but by 1:30 pm, and soon after a rapid team photo with our river guide extraordinaire, “Scratchy”, it was time to get back in our rafts again and start the second portion of our journey and adventure down the Upper Salt River.
Right after pulling our rafts out and continuing on from camp, and subsequent taking on the “Exhibition” Class III rapid, the scenery was even additional wonderful and spectacular as we promptly approached the beautiful Cibecue Canyon, the crossed Cibeque Creek. Immediately after operating the Cibecue Rapid, a Class II rapid, we turned a corner to the left and continued to get pleasure from the journey heading down this highly serene and tranquil stretch of the Upper Salt River till we came to what would be the ideal but last set of rapids of the day.
The moment again we had been suggested by our great river guide “Scratchy” what we had been to do as we approached initial the “3 Way” rapid, a Class III rapid, followed by the “Salt River Draw”, a Class II rapid, then on to our last rapid of the day, the “grand finale” and saving the very best for last it seemed, as we crashed, splashed, bumped, grinded and glided our way down By means of the rocking and rolling “Mezcal Falls”, a Class III-IV rapid that was totally the ideal one of them all! Wow, what a total adrenaline rush!
Right after pulling to the side to wait for the rest of our group to effectively make it By means of “Mezcal Falls”, we then floated for a couple of a lot more last minutes on the river till we lastly reached the end of our 9 mile river rafting adventure by about 2:30pm, and the access point exactly where Canyon Rio was waiting for us to transport us back to the parking region exactly where our automobiles had been and by 3:30pm we had arrived back at the parking lot, prepared to head back house to Phoenix again.
In all, what an extremely entertaining, thrilling and scenic outside adventure on the Upper Salt River! Truly a great day spent with good friends and every person from the Desert Mountain Paddlers team. And as well, an good river rafting expedition place with each other by the expert and skilled group of river guides from Canyon Rio Rafting. So if you happen to be searching for one thing new, thrilling, enjoyable and adventurous to do, then I extremely advocate you be certain to examine out white water rafting down the Upper Salt River, Globe, Arizona!